As the sun slowly rises over God’s own country a local fisherman quietly paddles through the calm backwaters. Children’s chatter and cows grassing along the shores. The smell of freshly cooked curries served on green banana leaves. An old man napping below the tree canopies. Life in Kerala seems easier, lighter, greener than in any other state. Welcome to Kerala – God’s own country!

Though Kerala is very much Indian, it still has a flavour of its own. Bathed in laidback’ness, natural glory and colonial charm. The latter symbolised by Cochin, the gateway to Kerala. Famous for its Dutch, British and Portuguese flavours, neatly bundled with Chinese fishing nets. Then transferred into Indian society in a perfectly balanced mix.

Outside Cochin, the mountains raise with the fine old tea plantations around Munnar, the national park at Periyar near Thekkady, so very green and lush. Then back down near the coast, to what Kerala is most famous for, the backwaters.

Have a night in luxury at a houseboat, cruising the mangrove and dining outside under the stars. Or rough it a bit and do the backwaters in kayak and stay locally in homestays.

If you need a beach to top it up they are here. Cherai near Kochi, Marari near Alleppey, and Varakala and Kovalam near the capital Trivandrum. To get a touch of India the soft, yet delicate way. Kerala is a true treat. Go Beyond the ordinary.

Kerala Basecamps